“During my 30 years at Americans for the Arts, I have had the great privilege to visit and learn about a different community nearly every week. While they differ vastly from one another, there is one common strength I have observed: the arts have made a profound impact on the health of each community.” – Robert L. Lynch, president, Americans for the Arts
“The most important thing, when studying music for whatever purpose, you develop a love for listening to great music. Once that seed is implanted the joy of music – of listening to great music – becomes something you have for the rest of your life.” – Jeffrey Siegel, pianist and creator of Keyboard Conversations
“On a recent visit to Berlin with the Jewish Federation of North America, I saw firsthand how important art is to a community.
While walking through the area formerly known as East Berlin, the architecture from the Soviet era was stark, rigid and militaristic. There was no beauty, no pleasure to be seen or felt.
In stark contrast, stands West Berlin, with its buildings decorated and embellished with statues and columns. It was like walking into an art museum when you toured the streets.
It was amazing to realize what a different feeling that some artistic adornment could give to a city.” –
Julee Landau, co-chair, Violins of Hope, Phoenix
“The arts enrich our community because it brings us closer together and helps us break out of our daily existence to feel more human. Whether it is the quest for discovering beauty, a desire to expand/challenge our individual mindsets or explore something we do not usually experience during our daily grinds, the arts bring together individuals from diverse backgrounds for these common human needs. Simply stated, the arts help us become a stronger, tolerant and more diverse community.” – Matthew Apfel, senior counsel, Apfel and Associates, P.C.
“Public art in a community is enjoyed by and accessible to all. It can be a work of beauty, may reflect cultures within a community, tell a story, educate or be a means to commemorate or honor. Art is a vehicle to evoke thought and reactions from the observer. Not only visual arts, but architecture, music and the performing arts within that community create an identity and quality of place.” – Gail T Roberts, public artist residing in Tucson
“The arts provide the lens by which we see ourselves. The arts, unlike any other discipline, help create and sustain a literate, analytical and democratic citizenry. Theatre, in particular, contextualizes the human experience even as it inspires, challenges and entertains.” – David Ivers, artistic director, Arizona Theatre Company
“The Arts provide us with the tools to express what it is to be human. Through music, dance, art, and drama we can communicate things that cannot be understood with pure reason – love, grief, beauty. This elevation of communication not only leads us to a deeper understanding of ourselves, but of each other. The more we understand each other, the greater connection we have, creating a stronger community.” –Patricia Cole, M.M., music teacher, Pardes Jewish Day School
“The arts enhance lives and enrich the community as a whole in drawing people of diverse interests and backgrounds to learn and value something new. They encourage dialogue, sharing of opinions and openness to different perspectives.” – Cheryl Blumenthal, director of Culture & Learning programs, Valley of the Sun JCC
“By making feelings, thoughts and ideas tangible, you create an opportunity to have shared experiences between individuals and groups within a community. By incorporating the arts into the community, you foster discussions and encourage the type of dynamic engagement that builds bonds and bridges. The arts strengthen not only the local community but the global community from within.” –Gabby Erbst, director of admissions & support services, Tucson Hebrew Academy
“The arts are beneficial to our community in so many ways! The marvelous memories, lifelong new friends and ability to express yourself in meaningful ways are just a few of the countless reasons the arts are so important. Participating in theater gives people a ‘home-away-from-home,’ enabling them to tap into a new side of themselves and explore different parts of who they are as a person. The arts bring people together to share in music, laughter and love, and I’m so glad I get to be a part of that!” -Marina Moser, Pardes Jewish Day School 8th grader
“Judaism is all about learning, and the arts improve us by helping us learn. In general, the arts enrich us by teaching us more about ourselves; maybe we are talented enough to do something today but weren’t yesterday. All of the arts also improve our lives by helping us express our feelings.” -Michelle Schwartz, Pardes Jewish Day School 4th grader
“Most kids these days will either play sports or do the complete opposite and sit around and play video games or spend time on social media. Sometimes we don’t realize that the arts influence a big part of who we are and how we express ourselves. Even though I play multiple sports, and chat with my friends on Snapchat, I love being exposed to a variety of arts. The arts are important in our community because it’s another way to express ourselves which helps us make a difference in our lives and possibly others. The arts enable us to embrace our deepest feelings, fears and dreams in a way that is unique to ourselves.” -Aviva Schnitzer, Madison Meadows Middle School, 7th grader.
“Whether it is a thought-provoking photograph, painting or sculp- ture that captures your heart or an enchanting poem or performance that simply takes your breath away, The arts enrich the quality of life for everyone, and make us more human.” -Howard H. Paley, General Manager, Phoenix Opera Company.